Villa Park residents getting sneak peek at library expansion plans
Residents will get a sneak peek Saturday at Villa Park Public Library's first major building project in nearly two decades.
Voters approved a property tax increase last April to pay for a $10.6 million project to renovate and expand the library at 305 S. Ardmore Ave.
Officials have since worked with an architect to design the addition and on Saturday residents will see the results of that work.
Williams Architects will provide an update on the project during a meeting from 10 a.m. to noon in the library conference room.
"The architect will let the public know where we're at with the project," including renderings and a floor plan, library Director Sandra Hill said. "We want to generate some excitement before we do the groundbreaking."
Construction is scheduled to begin in April.
It's expected to take a contractor about six months to build the addition on the north side of the existing structure, which will bring the building from its current 24,500 square feet to 33,000 square feet. Some work also will be done inside the existing building.
"Then we'll be moving staff and public areas into the addition while the renovation is done for the next six months," Hill said.
The renovation will include mechanical, structural, electrical, heating, cooling and plumbing work.
"Every system is being looked at and being renovated and brought up to current building code," Hill said.
She said the hope is that the entire project will be finished by June 2019.
Officials are planning to keep the library open as much as possible during construction.
"There may be some days when we have to move collections or move furniture," Hill said, "so there may be some temporary closures, but nothing extended."
The library was built in 1969 and last remodeled in 1997. When the new project is done, the renovated and expanded library will include a quiet reading room, multiple study rooms, a large program room and a larger digital media lab. There also will be more parking and an outdoor book drop accessible by car.
The $10.6 million for the project will be repaid with bonds over 20 years. As a result of the property tax increase, the owner of a $200,000 home will pay about $335 a year to the library -- a $90 increase from the previous $245.
For more details about the project, visit the library's website at vppl.info.